It appears that on one occasion, when asked to reveal what ele- ment could make the most differ- ence for the success of his initia- tives, Jean Monnet answered quite candidly: “A good restaurant!”. How - ever apocryphal, this anecdote nev - ertheless describes the essential method employed by the man who inspired functionalism: involve the leaders of the various European coun- tries in restricted and often secret summits in order to convince them to accept a limited transfer of sovereignty in the interest of their own people and the European cause.

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